Searching for relative mobile user interface (UI) design examples can aid interface designers in gaining inspiration and comparing design alternatives. However, finding such design examples is challenging, especially as current search systems rely on only text-based queries and do not consider the UI structure and content into account. This paper introduces VINS, a visual search framework, that takes as input a UI image (wireframe, high-fidelity) and retrieves visually similar design examples. We first survey interface designers to better understand their example finding process. We then develop a large-scale UI dataset that provides an accurate specification of the interface's view hierarchy (i.e., all the UI components and their specific location). By utilizing this dataset, we propose an object-detection based image retrieval framework that models the UI context and hierarchical structure. The framework achieves a mean Average Precision of 76.39\% for the UI detection and high performance in querying similar UI designs.
Documentation for DIY tasks serve as codified project knowledge and help makers reach new understandings and appreciations for the artifact. Engaging in reflective processes using the documentation can be challenging when it comes to physical objects as the documentation and the artifact exist separately. We hypothesize that spatially associating the documentation information with the artifact can provide richer contextualization to reflect upon the artifact and design process. We implemented and evaluated Documented, a web application that helps makers associate documentation to 3D printed objects. Information can be embedded using printed tags spatially placed on the model and accessed using mobile AR. Our study highlights the different strategies participants had for organizing, embedding, and retrieving information. Informed by our results, we discuss how the coupling of the documentation and the artifact can support reflection and identify potential barriers that need further investigation.
Flower jellies, a delicate dessert in which a flower-shaped jelly floats inside another clear jelly, fascinate people with both their beauty and elaborate construction. In efforts to simplify the challenging fabrication and enrich the design space of this dessert, we present Flower Jelly Printer: a printing device and design software for digitally fabricating flower jellies. Our design software lets users play with parameters and preview the resulting forms until achieving their desired shapes. We also developed slit injection printing that directly injects colored jelly into a base jelly, and shared several design examples to show the breadth of design possibilities. Finally, the user study with novice and experienced users demonstrates that our system benefits creators of all experience levels by iterative design and precise fabrication. We hope to enable more people to design and create their own flower jellies while expanding access and the design space for digitally fabricated foods.
Unprecedented maker efforts arose in response to COVID-19 medical supply gaps worldwide. Makers in the U.S., participated in peer-production activities to manufacture personal protective equipment (PPE). Whereas, medical makers, who innovate exclusively for points of care, pivoted towards safer, reliable PPE. What were their efforts to pivot medical maker infrastructure towards reliable production of safe equipment at higher volumes? We interviewed 13 medical makers as links between institutions, maker communities, and wider regional industry networks. These medical makers organized stopgap manufacturing in institutional spaces to resolve acute shortages (March--May) and chronic shortages (May--July). They act as intermediaries in efforts to prototype and produce devices under regulatory, material, and human constraints of a pandemic. We re-frame their making efforts as repair work to offer an alternate critical view of optimism around making for crisis. We contribute an understanding of these efforts to inform infrastructure design for making with purpose and safety leading to opportunities for community production of safe devices at scale.
Visual metaphors, which are widely used in graphic design, can deliver messages in creative ways by fusing different objects. The keys to creating visual metaphors are diverse exploration and creative combinations, which is challenging with conventional methods like image searching. To streamline this ideation process, we propose to use a mind-map-like structure to recommend and assist users to explore materials. We present MetaMap, a supporting tool which inspires visual metaphor ideation through multi-dimensional example-based exploration. To facilitate the divergence and convergence of the ideation process, MetaMap provides 1) sample images based on keyword association and color filtering; 2) example-based exploration in semantics, color, and shape dimensions; and 3) thinking path tracking and idea recording. We conduct a within-subject study with 24 design enthusiasts by taking a Pinterest-like interface as the baseline. Our evaluation results suggest that MetaMap provides an engaging ideation process and helps participants create diverse and creative ideas.
Mathematical models and expressions traditionally evolved as symbolic representations, with cognitively arbitrary rules of symbol manipulation. The embodied mathematics philosophy posits that abstract math concepts are layers of metaphors grounded in our intuitive arithmetic capabilities, such as categorizing objects and part-whole analysis. We introduce a design framework that facilitates the construction and exploration of embodied representations for algebraic expressions, using interactions inspired by innate arithmetic capabilities. We instantiated our design in a sketch interface that enables construction of visually interpretable compositions that are directly mappable to algebraic expressions and explorable through a ladder of abstraction. The emphasis is on bottom-up construction, with the user sketching pictures while the system generates corresponding algebra. We present diverse examples created by our prototype system. A coverage of the US Common Core curriculum and playtesting studies with children point to the future direction and potential for a sketch-based design paradigm for mathematics.
The access and growing ubiquity of digital fabrication has ushered in a celebration of creativity and ``making.'' However, the focus is often on the resulting static artifact or the creative process and tools to design it. We envision a post-making process that extends past these final static objects --- not just in their making but in their ``unmaking.'' By drawing from artistic movements such as Auto-Destructive Art, intentionally inverting well-established engineering principles of structurally sound designs, and safely misusing unstable materials, we demonstrate an important extension to making --- unmaking. In this paper, we provide designers with a new vocabulary of unmaking operations within standard 3D modeling tools. We demonstrate how such designs can be realized using a novel multi-material 3D printing process. Finally, we detail how unmaking allows designs to change over time, is an ally to sustainability and re-usability, and captures themes of ``aura,'' emotionality, and personalization.
Though photographs of real people are typically used to portray personas, there is little research into the potential advantages or disadvantages of using such images, relative to other image styles. We conducted an experiment with 149 participants, testing the effects of six different image styles on user perceptions and personality traits that are attributed to personas by the participants. Results show that perceptions of clarity, completeness, consistency, credibility, and empathy for a persona increase with picture realism. Personas with more realistic pictures are also perceived as more agreeable, open, and emotionally stable, with higher confidence in these assessments. We also find evidence of the uncanny valley effect, with realistic cartoon personas experiencing a decrease in the user perception scores.
Digital tools that support creative activities are ubiquitous in the design industry, yet practitioners appear to prefer pen and paper for design ideation. To better understand this exception, we conducted a comparative study between analog and digital tools and their impact on the divergent and convergent thinking patterns of groups of designers. We analysed how 24 participants solved comparable design ideation tasks in two conditions using linkographic protocol analysis -- a notation method that focuses on identifying and linking small steps in the design process called moves. Our findings suggest that digital ideation tools yield more convergent thinking compared to analog tools, with no discernible impact on general productivity or divergent thinking.
3D printing, as a rapid prototyping technique, usually fabricates objects that are difficult to modify physically. This paper presents FlexTruss, a design and construction pipeline based on the assembly of modularized truss-shaped objects fabricated with conventional 3D printers and assembled by threading. To create an end-to-end system, a parametric design tool with an optimal Euler path calculation method is developed, which can support both inverse and forward design workflow and multi-material construction of modular parts. In addition, the assembly of truss modules by threading is evaluated with a series of application cases to demonstrate the affordance of FlexTruss. We believe that FlexTruss extends the design space of 3D printing beyond typically hard and fixed forms, and it will provide new capabilities for designers and researchers to explore the use of such flexible truss structures in human-object interaction.
3D printing technology makes Do-It-Yourself and reforming everyday objects a reality. However, designing and fabricating attachments that can seamlessly adapt existing objects to extended functionality is a laborious process, which requires accurate measuring, modeling, manufacturing, and assembly. This paper presents ShrinCage, a 4D printing system that allows novices to easily create shrinkable adaptations to fit and fasten existing objects. Specifically, the design tool presented in this work aid in the design of attachment that adapts to irregular morphologies, which accommodates the variations in measurements and fabrication, subsequently simplifying the modeling and assembly processes. We further conduct mechanical tests and user studies to evaluate the availability and feasibility of this method. Numerous application examples created by ShrinCage prove that it can be adopted by aesthetic modification, assistive technology, repair, upcycling, and augmented 3D printing.
Digital fabrication and craftsmanship is entering into a new phase with increasing levels of complexity and a renewed desire for composites and cross-material experimentation. However, allowing work to travel from machine to machine, remains a challenge in terms of workflow, communication, orientation and material. Based on an exploration to combine embroidery and 3D printing in the pursuit of inflatable solutions, we propose the metaphor of the drawing game Exquisite Corpse to outline the three emerging concerns: turn taking, orientation and trade-offs. We propose a set of guidelines that suggest ways in which, we may allow different digital fabrication machines to be used in sequence, as a method for adding complexity to the things we make and the ways our machines may talk to one another.